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Frank Sinatra (3) vs. Virginia Apgar; Julia Child advances

My favorite comment from yesterday came from Ethan, who picked up on the public TV/radio connection and rated our two candidate speakers on their fundraising abilities. Very appropriate for the university—I find myself spending more and more time raising money for Stan, myself. A few commenters picked up on Child’s military experience. I like the whole shark repellent thing, as it connects to the whole “shark attacks determine elections” story. Also, Jeff points out that “a Julia win would open at least the possibility of a Wilde-Child semifinal,” and Diana brings up the tantalizing possibility that Julia Grownup would show up. That would be cool. I looked up Julia Grownup and it turns out she was on Second City too!

As for today’s noontime matchup . . . What can I say? New Jersey’s an amazing place. Hoboken’s own Frank Sinatra is only the #3 seed of our entries from that state, and he’s pitted against Virginia Apgar, an unseeded Jerseyite. Who do you want to invite for our seminar: the Chairman of the Board, or a pioneering doctor who’s a familiar name to all parents of newborns?

Here’s an intriguing twist: I looked up Apgar on wikipedia and learned that she came from a musical family! Meanwhile, Frank Sinatra had friends who put a lot of people in the hospital. So lots of overlap here.

You can evaluate the two candidates on their own merits, or based on who has a better chance of besting Julia Child in round 2.

Again, the full bracket is here, and here are the rules:

We’re trying to pick the ultimate seminar speaker. I’m not asking for the most popular speaker, or the most relevant, or the best speaker, or the deepest, or even the coolest, but rather some combination of the above.

I’ll decide each day’s winner not based on a popular vote but based on the strength and amusingness of the arguments given by advocates on both sides. So give it your best!


  1. Jeff says:

    “(Of Course) You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby: The Predictable Rise of Women in Medicine,” Virginia Apgar.

  2. Ethan Bolker says:

    Blue eyes don’t contribute to the Apgar score. The “g” in the backronym is for “grimace” (thanks, wikipedia). That’s what I would be doing at a Sinatra colloquium. Apgar for me, but I’m for Julia next time around whoever wins this one.

    • Dzhaughn says:

      I got as far as “Nancy’s ancestor,” and then a Youtube clip of Joey Bishop told me, pal, stop he’s a legend, he don’t need no backronym from you or anybody. He don’t need no google doodle, although it would have been a respectful gesture on his 100th birthday, but nevermind. He’s a legend, and he’s against someone who puts people to sleep. Professionally.

      And he has smoked on television.

  3. zbicyclist says:

    I could listen to Sinatra sing for hours and hours. No contest whom I’d rather listen to for an hour.

  4. Manuel says:

    I guess even Bruno Latour would agree that the very definition of a star seminar is Sinatra talking on “The ethical standards of running experiments with the Rat Pack”.

  5. J Storrs Hall says:

    British actor Ian Hendry played Dr. David Keel in the first season of the Avengers. (John Steed, his assistant, inherited the rest of the series. Oll Veddy Bditish.) His Ipswich accent is genuine and impeccable.

    Yet we find him playing Italian-American gangster Alessandro Destamio / Dino Cartelli in Vendetta for the Saint (with Roger Moore of course as Simon Templar). Ian’s look and feel, most notably his accent, is as tone-perfect an imitation of Frank Sinatra as I have ever seen from any English actor.

    Let us raise a standard to which the wise and honest can repair; the rest is in the hands of God.

  6. Jonathan (another one) says:

    Sinatra is an anagram of both artisan and tsarina. Apgar has no English anagram. Virginia is from New Jersey. Sounds confusing.

    Ok. I admit it. I got nothing. I don’t care.

  7. Anonymous says:

    “I looked up Apgar on wikipedia and learned that she came from a musical family! Meanwhile, Frank Sinatra had friends who put a lot of people in the hospital. So lots of overlap here.”



  8. J Storrs Hall says:

    Also, consider the topics Sinatra could cover:

    Geography (New York, New York)
    DIY crafts (My Way)
    Astronautics (Fly Me to the Moon)
    Dermatology (I’ve Got You Under My Skin)
    Astronomy (The Way You Look Tonight)
    IQ research (Somethin’ Stupid)
    Biology (That’s Life)
    and climate science (Summer Wind)!

    • Anonymous says:

      I spend 30 minutes or so yesterday looking at Sinatra’s song titles, and trying to connect them to Apgar to try and be clever/smart/funny. I gave up on it, and i think it would have never been as good as your comment using Sinatra’s song titles in a different way!


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